Being rejected is a sign that you have pushed yourself out of your comfort zone and have tried to achieve something. Rejection can sting and hurt our self-esteem if we don’t manage it properly. We can use rejection to learn and gain what we originally set out for. Here are some pointers on how you can use rejection to your advantage.
1. Create some space to feel your emotions. Avoiding your emotions by distracting yourself, using alcohol or drugs will eventually make you feel worse. You can make space for your emotions by acknowledging and accepting the fear, loneliness or sadness that might come from rejection. You do not need to let your emotions control you, but you can get comfortable with them by accepting that your emotions are there to teach you something. Sadness allows us to slow down and analyze, fear pushes us out of our comfort zone, and loneliness enables us to reach out.
2. What did you learn? Rejection enables us to take a step back and learn about our priorities, goals, motivations and what we can do better next time.
3. Practice self-compassion. Speak kindly to yourself. Imagine you are speaking to a close friend who has just been rejected. Would you belittle them or make them feel bad about themselves? Or would you encourage them to try again and acknowledge that everyone makes mistakes? Do something kind for yourself on a daily basis, whether it is meditation, reading a book, getting a massage, or just spending time alone to reflect.
4. Reach out for social support. When we feel down, it is easy to isolate ourselves. Social support reminds us that we are not alone and that others have gone through what we have gone through. Sometimes just talking about it with your friends or family helps you to feel better.
5. You are so much more than this one rejection. Remember that this rejection has nothing to do with who you are as a person. The rejection does not mean that you are fundamentally flawed.
Dr Monica Borschel is a US-trained Clinical Psychologist Get in touch with Dr Borschel: firstname.lastname@example.org for an individual or skype session.